What you need to know about your badly behaving stepchild.

When our stepchildren act out it’s because they want attention.

I don’t know why wanting attention is often perceived as shameful. The need for attention is a basic human need. After all, as a child, we would literally die without attention.

If we replace “attention” with “connection” it may be easier to empathize with them.

Let’s take a break from disciplining them for how they cry out for help, and instead focus on answering their cry for help.

It is much easier to influence behavior after we connect.


Personality trains of Extraverted Sensing Thinking Judging (ESTJ):

  • Very logical
  • Responsible, even at a young age
  • Learn from experience
  • Literal
  • True to their word
  • Trustworthy
  • Active and outgoing

What Parents need to know about ESTJ Children:

  • Offer clear and explicit instructions. They will take direction literally.
  • Give advance notice of change. Help them prepare for it. Expose them little by little when possible.
  • They thrive with routine and structure.
  • Model compassion and empathy. It won’t come natural to them. Use logic to explain benefits of showing compassion. Model compassion often.
  • Teach them how to soften their words for the sake of other’s feelings. Give them scripts when possible.
  • Do as you say. They’ll hold you to it.
  • Provide time outdoors and opportunities to burn off energy.
  • Be direct and honest. No need to sugarcoat.
  • When explaining rules, also explain the logic behind them. They’re driven by logic, not emotion.
  • Help them master decision-making. If anything, they’re too quick to close a door.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.



Extraverted Sensing Feeling Judging

Personality Traits of ESFJ:

  • Vulnerable to opinions and feelings of others.
  • High need to feel included.
  • People pleasers.
  • Quickly warm up to strangers.
  • Energize by being around others. The more the merrier.
  • Enjoy being at the center of activity.
  • Always need to be on the move.
  • Literal.
  • Need to be appreciated.
  • Strong dislike conflict. High need for harmony.
  • Cry easily.
  • Quick to understand and adopt rules.
  • More into fashion than other types. This is true of both males and females.
  • Like being in control.
  • Won’t hesitate to share their feelings and opinions.
  • Perfectionists.
  • High Energy.

What Parents need to know about raising ESFJs:

  • Offer frequent reassurance and reminding of how much you like and care for them.
  • Provide structure, routine and predictability.
  • Offer an abundance of physical affection.
  • Provide opportunities for them to socialize in groups.
  • Engage them in physical activities. They have a hard time being sedentary or quiet.
  • Young children and babies can be calmed by movement. Stroller rides, car rides, bouncing…
  • Young children will enjoy all kinds of sensory play.
  • Show them appreciation. They can’t get enough of it.
  • They will need help tempering their enthusiasm.
  • After conflict, they need to know they’re forgiven, and require an apology before they can forgive.
  • Will need help speaking tactfully and truthfully.
  • Stay true to your word. Do as you say you’ll do, and when you’ll do.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.


Introverted Sensing Thinking Judging

Personality traits of ISTJ:

  • Great memory for details. Likely does well in the public school system which targets ISTJ/ESTJs learning style more than any other.
  • Trust their personal experience over everything else.
  • Realistic and down to earth.
  • Value fairness over mercy
  • Decision making process is driven by logic and facts. Not emotion.
  • Serious.
  • Slow to warm up to strangers.
  • Need routine, structure and time to prepare.
  • Mechanically minded.
  • Literal.
  • Prefer 1 to 1 interaction over group socializing.
  • Impatient with public displays of emotion.

What Parents need to know about raising ISTJ children:

  • Build their self-esteem by allowing the to consider all of the data and facts before making decisions.
  • Often forms a much stronger bond with one parent over another.
  • Won’t enjoy  being hugged/touched by someone they don’t know well. Empower them to turn down another’s request for physical affection.
  • Very quick to become cranky with insufficient sleep or food. More so than other types.
  • Provide routine and structure. Let them know the plans for the day ahead.
  • Often sensitive to certain smells or textures.
  • It is important to be clear in your expectations and accurate.
  • If you say you’re going to do something, know they are more likely to hold you to it than other types.
  • When attempting to influence, don’t use feeling words. Focus on the facts and logical benefits to doing what is being asked of them.
  • Provide loads of time between transitions. Change and adjustments are difficult for them.
  • Give plenty of notice when change is coming.
  • For young kids, provide play dates with 1 close friend at a time.
  • Help them understand what they’re feeling. They spend more time in their heads than their hearts.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.


Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Perceiving

Personality traits of INTP:

  • Logical and analytical
  • Risk takers.
  • Slow to warm up to new kids.
  • Dislike authority and being authoritarian.
  • Serious
  • Direct and blunt. Often oblivious to how their words impacts others.
  • Enjoy people watching and observe from the sidelines.
  • Quick learner.
  • Prefer to have a best friend over lots of acquaintances.
  • Easy going nature.
  • Need alone time to process new information.
  • Prefer parallel play/work to group activities.
  • Eager to learn when the topic is of interest to them.
  • Require variety to stay interested.
  • Have little tolerance for imaginative story telling.
  • Come across as aloof. Unlikely to express emotions.
  • Asks why, why, why…
  • Confident.
  • Not easily offended.

What Parents need to know about INTPs:

  • Offer physical affection, but know they will often refuse it.
  • Provide them with downtime after prolonged socialization.
  • Consider signing them up for individual sports over team spots.
  • Let them take things apart such as old appliances. They’ll enjoy exploring how it works.
  • They prefer to learn by doing.
  • Don’t take their lack of affection and appreciation personally.
  • Don’t sugarcoat. They can handle the truth.
  • They will need help developing compassion. Use logic to explain the feelings of others.
  • You can strengthen your connection by practice “Acts of service”. It is often their dominant love language.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.


Extraverted iNtuitive Thinking Perceiving

Personality traits of ENTP:

  • Quick to see possibilities in everything.
  • Logical and analytical.
  • Eager to interact with their environment
  • Enjoy being around others.
  • Need variety. Get bored easily.
  • Enjoy being the center of attention.
  • Warm up to new kids quickly.
  • Enjoy putting their personal spin on how to do things.
  • Independent. You’ll hear “by myself” early in their life.
  • More likely to respond with anger than sadness.

What Parents need to know:

  • Indulge them in talk about the possibilities they see in everything. It energizes them.
  • Plan lots of play dates or opportunities to socialize. They don’t enjoy spending time alone.
  • Offer them gentle guidance and support their preference to learn through experience.
  • Help them practice patience. This will be a challenge for them as their thoughts flow so quickly.
  • As much as possible, support them in their need to be independent.
  • They will need help expressing compassion. Use logic to explain the feelings of others.
  • Be patient as you coach them in time management. It is not a strong-suit.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.


Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging

Personality traits of INTJ:

  • Easily identify patterns and possibilities.
  • Private.
  • Intellectual.
  • Intense.
  • Observe from the sidelines, before participating.
  • Quiet.
  • Need quiet time to process new information.
  • Slow to warm up to strangers.
  • Don’t smile easily.
  • Not very affectionate.
  • Enjoy playing alone, or parallel play.
  • More interested in systems and experiences, than people.
  • Efficient.
  • Prefer non-fiction to fiction.
  • Ask why, more than how or what.
  • Enjoy museums. Science more than Art.
  • Decisions are driven by logic. Not emotion.
  • Direct and blunt. Often at the expense of another’s feelings.
  • Confident by nature.
  • Not empathic by nature.
  • Don’t cry easily.
  • Expect a lot of themselves, and others.
  • Benefit from routine and structure.
  • Need their environment and belongings to be organized, and in order.
  • Decisive, only when they are certain they have all the facts.
  • Come across as aloof in social situations.
  • Stubborn.
  • Even tempered.

What Parents need to know:

  • Attempting to control them is futile. Instead, learn to influence using logic.
  • Avoid battle of wills. You will lose. Instead, ask for their input when making rules and decisions.
  • Offer support and let the child come to you when they’re ready.
  • Find comfort in the knowledge this is the least likely type to succumb to peer pressure.
  • At the earliest opportunity, empower them to take control of various aspects of their life. Define the requirements, and let them determine how to go about it.
  • Allow your child to explore their many ideas, shielding them of criticism and negativity from others.
  • “Acts of Service” is a popular Love Language with this type.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.


Extraverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging

Personality traits of ENTJ:

  • Strong willed and opinionated.
  • Independent.
  • Value logic over feelings.
  • Intellectually curious.
  • Efficient.
  • Always eager to learn something new.
  • Competent.
  • Energetic and challenging to parent.
  • Require variety in experiences and with toys.
  • Speak adult like early on in life.
  • Always think they’re right.
  • Intense
  • Direct and blunt. Often at the expense of another’s feelings.
  • Decisions are purely driven by logic.
  • Decisive.
  • Would rather be respected than liked.
  • May not like being touched.
  • Need routine and structure to thrive.
  • Think aloud to work through their ideas and thoughts.
  • Future oriented.
  • More likely to lead than follow.
  • Don’t require approval from others.
  • Confident by nature.

What Parents need to know about ENTJ children:

  • Appeal to them with logic, not feelings.
  • Be sure to rotate toys to accommodate their need for variety
  • Teach them to take the feelings of others into consideration when making decisions.
  • Will need help developing empathy and diplomacy.
  • Offer, but don’t force physical affection on them.
  • Teach them to politely decline offers of physical affection.
  • Demonstrate respect for their abilities and intelligence.
  • When communicating, focus on facts. Not feelings.
  • Influence with logic and practicality.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.



Introverted iNtuitive Feeling Perceiving

Personality traits of INFP:

  • Strong personal values.
  • Feels deeply. Personalizes everything.
  • Require inner harmony.
  • Idealistic
  • Considered a dreamer.
  • Easily empathize with others. Sometimes too much for their own good.
  • May be slow to make new friends.
  • Appear detached, when they are anything but that.
  • Slow to open up and reveal themselves.
  • Conflict, whether they are part of it, or simply observing it, causes anxiety.
  • Soft spoken.
  • Enjoy reading. Prefer fiction.
  • Often run late.

What Parents need to know about INFP children:

  • Offer constant love and reassurance. They will become moody and negative without it.
  • Try not to argue in front of your INFP children. Conflict causes anxiety.
  • Offer them private opportunities to express themselves. They are unlikely to do so in the company of others.
  • Provide one on one play dates that don’t involve aggression or rough play.
  • Need quiet and alone time to process information.
  • Offer them time to reflect before being asked to speak to new information.
  • They are more likely to have one best friend, then a group of friends.
  • Be cautious about yelling or speaking harshly. They are deeply hurt by both.
  • Influence by validating their feelings and partnering with them in developing solutions.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.



Extraverted iNtuitive Feeling Perceiving

Personality Traits:

  • Endless stream of original ideas.
  • An Insatiable curiosity.
  • High need to talk about their ideas.
  • Emotional.
  • Feelings are easily hurt.
  • High energy level
  • Enthusiastic and excited to interact with others.
  • Smile easily.
  • Creative and imaginative.
  • Often ask why, why, why,
  • Enjoy performing for an audience.
  • Engages in role play and make-believe.
  • Deeply caring.
  • Aware of the feelings of others.
  • Question everything.
  • Younger children can often be loud and wild, until they develop emotional regulation.
  • People pleasers.
  • Indecisive. Like to keep their options open.
  • Have a hard time concentrating.
  • Adolescent ENFPs enjoy shocking adults.
  • Very persistent when attempting to change your mind.

What Parents need to know about ENFP children:

  • Understand they are proud of their many ideas. It is part of their identity.
  • Validate their feelings and be cautious of yelling or using harsh criticism.
  • Provide them with lots of opportunities to socialize with peers.
  • Get cranky when they spend too much time at home.
  • Offer a lot of physical affection.
  • Young ENFPs do well with lots of opportunities to create art.
  • Will need help managing school work.
  • Influence by offering the same respect you would to another adult.
  • Allow them to present a well thought out argument, in an attempt to influence your decisions.
  • Help them burn energy by offering challenging physical activities.
  • Rotate toys to keep them interested. They need variety.
  • Be patient with all of their questions.
  • Take their ideas seriously. Share in their excitement.
  • Don’t confuse their need to indulge in fantasy and tell stories, with lying.
  • Consider signing up for a variety of short-term activities, instead of long-term ones requiring a commitment they will have difficulty keeping.

Now that you know your child’s type,  consider enrolling in our online intensive “Build a Better Bond with your (step)children“.